U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials publicly executed a Land Rover Defender on Tuesday after it had been seized at the Port of Baltimore in April. Only Defenders 25 years old or older are allowed into the United States, even though they are welcomed all over the world. This Defender had its VIN swapped out, and Customs officials ordered its death.
“Like winds and sunsets, wild things were taken for granted until progress began to do away with them. Now we face the question whether a still higher “standard of living” is worth its cost in things natural, wild, and free.
For us of in the minority, the opportunity to see geese is more important than television, and the chance to find a pasque-flower is a right as inalienable as free speech.”
I’m feeling particularly anti-establishment today as I look over blueprints and work on bids for customers that keep flip-flopping on whether to “color, or not to color”… “We’re thinking about doing this… oh wait, no we better do that… well, we can order it right? won’t that just look lovely in our kitchen… blah, blah, f****** blah…” The cabin dwellers are so much easier to work for and they don’t own dogs that ‘yap’, but sadly they can’t pay as well, and these days one has to sell his soul for a tank of gasoline.
Over the past two days, I’ve been asked to do another roof job & another siding job this summer, and I, in a Fit of Greed with eyes set firmly on the trail, agreed to do the jobs. Does anyone know when Excedrin will be back on store shelves?
It was -32 here Wednesday & Thursday morning, then warmed up to a balmy -28 this morning. Unfortunately, I left one of the two dampers open on the new woodstove last night, so it was 48 degrees in the cabin this morning, which was disappointing.
I regret not meeting up with friends in St Paul this weekend for the regionals going on at the X. I could have & probably should have gone down for them prior to the Frozen Four, but I honestly figured it would have warmed up to at least normal temps by now in Alaska, and didn’t see the hurry until it was too late to change my flight.
I did finally watch the Leopold documentary “Green Fire” last night. My bear biologist friend loaned it to me, and I figured I better watch it before I leave town, because he’s the type of guy who’d send a grizzly after me if I didn’t. It was well done, but I’m feeling too cynical about mankind today to give it a proper review. I wrote out a nice, long paragraph just now on the film, but then realized that sometimes the delete key is there for a reason.
From November 15 through November 21, the average temperature in Fairbanks was 30.1 degrees — below zero. In fact, during that period, the temp did not rise above -20F. It’s been damn cold.
We get a break for a couple of days, in fact as I type this it is 1 degree Above zero, then we’re dropping back down to minus thirty in time for all that Black Friday mess. I’m sure that will help make for some wonderful shopping memories.
I also will be heading back to my cabin on Friday. I wonder how long it will take to raise the temperature Inside the cabin 100 degrees?? Any guesses?
Wilson Ramos, the former top catching prospect of the Minnesota Twins who was traded to the Washington Nationals, has been kidnapped in his native Venezuela. Ramos was back with family and playing in the Venezuelan Winter League, when four armed men arrived at Ramos’ mother’s home and forced Ramos into a vehicle before fleeing.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen now,” said Enrique Brito, a longtime official in the Venezuelan winter league who is close with Ramos’s family. “It’s going to be bad for the culture, for the league, for everything. Wilson is one of the best players that we had. It’s bad. It’s real bad, for all Venezuelan people and fans. We are all shocked.”
Let’s hope that Wilson is released soon, and this doesn’t turn into a tragedy like the case of Henry Blanco’s brother, who was kidnapped & killed even as Blanco negotiated for his release.
Driving towards Veracruz, I passed through two checkpoints: one was the Federales and the other was military. Both stopped me this time around. The soldiers asked me where I had been and where I will be going. The Federale asked me where I had been, then asked me if I had enjoyed the food, how did you find the people, and then finally he thanked me for visiting Mexico. He actually thanked me.
Now I know why. He knew what was up ahead.
This time the f****** officer was greedy and kept me on the side of the road until he wore me down. He cleaned me out of all the cash that I didn’t have hidden, and it still wasn’t enough, but he finally realized it really was all I had “available”.
I am trying very hard to not get a bad taste in my mouth for Mexico. It is a f******* shame two lazy, corrupt &%#(*!@$ can have such an impact. I can see why most Americans get turned off by the corrupt policia. UGH!
I said “f*** it” and pulled into a very night hotel for $70 U.S. with a beautiful room, a pool, and a very nice bar.
*I already feel better after the beer*
I couldn’t afford scotch.
NYE in Xilitla has less to do with fireworks and more to do with small bombs. The louder and the greater shockwave… the better. There was none of that candy-ass, flower-like, sky brightening crap that they force on us in the States. In Mexico, they throw land mines in the air like a discus. There is no “oohhhing” or “aawwwing”. When one explodes, all you hear is “Do you have a louder one?”
They stopped throwing the land mines around 2, maybe 3 am. I had given up and had turned in by then. I do know that they started up again at 7am precisely.
I was on the road at 8, even though I had a short kilometer day. It turned out to be a good thing.
The roads today were the worst I have seen on the trip. I also set a personal record for the number of topes I drove over in one day. I hope I won’t be breaking that soon. When there wasn’t topes, the road was just in a case of serious decay, which isn’t much more fun. So between the two, I was pretty frazzled by the time I drove into Poza Rica, where I was planning on camping. There isn’t much to say about this oil town, other than the fact that it is just north of El Tajin.
Then my good luck ran out with the local law, and I had my very first Mexican Shakedown Experience. Corrupt, does not even begin to describe it. I still haven’t cooled down, and I am still in his district, so I will refrain for now with details on the ordeal.
Suffice it to say, I left Poza Rica with a lot fewer pesos and a much greater distaste for that slimy town. I had personal contact with three officers today, and I only have a clear picture of the one I’d like to lather up in bacon grease and drop off in the middle of the tundra when the bears first come out of their winter dens…
Once the nice officer had relieved me of my hard-earned pesos, he wanted me gone quickly. I wanted to go one way, but he refused and went out into the street to halt traffic so I was forced to take his route. I’m guessing he enjoyed sending the tourist off in the wrong direction.
Luckily for me, it worked out well. Down the road, I spotted a sign for the Emerald Coast. Speaking fond French words to, and about Poza Rica, I took the turn to the coast, leaving that rancid town behind. The day was early enough, and the tank was full enough for the hour or so drive.
My main concern was that the guidebooks discouraged camping here during the two weeks on either side of NY’s. Locals from Vercruz and the surrounding areas flock here to camp during this time.
Maybe they did last year.
When I turned off of 180 into the drive, the cool breeze flowed through my open windows and vents, and I could see some decent waves crashing onto the black beach, but people were few. I did a quick walk around to find two other sites occupied, but that was all. The family that runs the place has been absolutely great. Very professional, and with a quick wit. They decided early on it was easier for them to talk English than to listen to me butcher Spanish, but they did that in a kind way.
The Mexican Camping Guide I have says that this place has free WiFi and hot showers. It turns out that the part about the hot showers is true, which was all I needed to hear. The very first thing I did was to go and take a shower. The second thing I did was to return to The Rover and open a very cold beer.
BTW. Thanks Mark!